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Business rates - BBPA reaction to Autumn Statement


BBPA Chief Executive Brigid Simmonds comments:

“The extension of Small Business Rate Relief for another year is welcome, and is worth £25 million, and is something we had specifically requested. One third of pubs will qualify, 15,000 premises, in total.

“However, it is very disappointing that the Chancellor has not extended retail relief for a further year – this is effectively a £1,500 tax increase for the majority of pubs, and will add £46 million to pubs’ rates bills.

“Retail relief was providing a discount for pubs with a rateable value of £50k or less, which is 75 per cent of all pubs. This is a particular problem in the run-up to the revaluation in 2017 as rates bills have become out of kilter with the value of individual businesses.

“Britain’s pubs face a total tax bill of £7.3 billion per year, so we will be keeping up the pressure for further measures, such as more action on both beer duty and business rates, as we move towards the Budget in March.

“I do welcome the announcement that small businesses like pubs will typically not be burdened with the Apprenticeship Levy, as this would have placed an excessive burden on what are mostly small businesses. It is crucial that the Levy system is straightforward and allows those that pay into the Levy fund to access their full contribution to support apprenticeships.

“I also welcome the £40 million for Visit England to fund product development, given the vital role that pubs play in the wider tourism industry.”

Notes to editors:

The BBPA this week published a report by Oxford Economics, The average British pub’s costs and tax contribution; sectoral comparisons (November 2015) which is available on the BBPA website here.

The BBPA had also written jointly with other pub industry bodies to the Chancellor. The letter is available on the BBPA website here. The letter called on the Government to:

  • Freeze the business rates multiplier, benefiting all pubs and worth around £5m to the sector
  • Extend small business rate relief for another year, benefitting a third of pubs, or 15,000 pubs
  • Apply Retail Relief for another year – a scheme that provides a discount for pubs with a rateable value of £50k or less – and increase the discount to £2,000 per annum, per pub

The British Beer & Pub Association is the leading body representing Britain’s brewers and pub companies. The Association is more than a century old and was originally founded as the Brewers’ Society in 1904. Our members account for some 90 per cent of beer brewed in Britain today, and own around 20,000 of the nation’s pubs.


Employment, General, Business rates

For further information contact:

Neil Williams
Head of Media
Tel: 020 7627 9156 / 07974 249 779

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